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Reviewed by Jennifer Ibiam for Readers' Favorite
Gift of Diamonds by Roberta Seret follows the life and exploits of Mica in Romania and beyond. In the mid-1960s, seventeen-year-old Mica lived in Spera with doting parents, who were top members of the Transylvanian anti-communists. Mica loved the theater and had dreams of acting and dancing on big stages someday. But, being in a communist country and following her parents' activities, some obstacles would thwart her dreams. And then it happened! Dictator Ceausescu seized power, and all hell was let loose. Mica missed her parents at the theater performance, ran home, and couldn’t find them. Where were they? Anton, her father, prepared her for such a day. She must take her father’s hidden stash of diamonds and escape. But where is safe, and can she evade the government?
Gift of Diamonds by Roberta Seret is the first installment of the Transylvanian Trilogy that left me feeling overwhelmed. This novel was a tale of survival, will, grit, resilience, bravery, and loyalty, all embedded in politics and power play. I loved the introduction and the prologue that contained teasers to whet my appetite. The plot and storyline were extraordinary, and the character development was excellent! Roberta wrote with feeling, and she evoked a cocktail of emotions from me. Mica was the perfect heroine. I also loved other characters like Simion, Magda, Diane, and even Dinu. Cancer sucks and is no respecter of anyone, no matter how fit they are, and I was scared there for a minute. The epilogue was tear-jerking, and I had goosebumps for the four musketeers. I cannot wait to read about Anca, Cristina, and Marina. All brave women! Brava, Roberta!